With Mother’s Day looming just a week away, I wanted to share a few thoughts with you. Whether you have one or more children to hold in your arms or whether you don’t, because of infertility or because they are in heaven, there are some things that we might all benefit from remembering.
1. Each year, I hear women share their expectations for Mother’s Day. It’s usually much higher of a standard than they are sure to experience. It seems that whether it be Mother’s Day or some other holiday, too much emphasis and expectation is placed on these man-invented days to celebrate self. We all want a day to be honored. We all want a day for people to recognize what we have done and who we are. It is definitely nice to be noticed and appreciated, but whatever happened to serving others? Why do we feel that we deserve a day of praise? What if we took that special holiday and flipped it around? Maybe instead of expecting everyone to cater to us and to our needs that day, we should try to find someone who is truly in need of encouragement and lift their spirits. I guarantee that the benefits would reach you in your need as well.
Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Philippians 2:3-4
One thing that struck me in regards to this principle of serving others, in lieu of being served… When Jesus celebrated the Last Supper with His disciples, He knew He would soon be suffering the punishment for the sins of the world. He knew that His time to die was near. However, instead of sitting back and expecting His followers to serve and take care of Him and His needs, He became humble and served them. He washed their feet, even the feet of the very one who would betray Him. What an example!
If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you. Truly, truly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them. John 13:14-17
2. Concentrate on the season of life that you are currently in, not where you would like to be. If you spend your day wishing to be a mother or to hold a child, you will surely be disappointed with the outcome, not to mention you will most certainly ruin the day. However, if you spend your day loving the mother God gave to you, the mother-in-law your husband shares with you, or the other special and influential women in your life, you will be celebrating something of value. You will be counting the blessings that you have, and living in contentment, which always brings great gain.
But godliness with contentment is great gain, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. 1 Timothy 6:6-7
3. Don’t force the people around you to recognize you or your situation. Allow God to bring you to the mind of others, when He feels it is most beneficial. Wouldn’t you rather receive flowers or a gift from your spouse or a friend on some random day, just because they thought of you, than to make someone remember you on a day that it is expected? Just because the day was named on the calendar, doesn’t mean that it’s sacred. Let God meet your needs.
And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19
4. Make new memories. Just because past Mother’s Days have been a negative experience, doesn’t mean that they have to continue to be. Come up with some new traditions or some new ways of celebrating with others. Last year, I decided to ditch the expectations and spend the day doing something special with my family. We went to a local park and played for hours in a creek, catching crayfish. We had Wendy’s for supper. It was wonderful! Instead of waiting for “memories” to find me, I went out and created some.
So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them. Matthew 7:12a
5. Schedule a time to talk to God before Mother’s Day begins. Share your heart with your Heavenly Father. Ask Him to allow you to experience all the joy that He has intended for you.
You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Psalm 16:11
Remember, it’s not about us anyhow. It’s all about Him!
Original material by Holly M. Besser, ©2013. May not be used or re-printed without permission. bp35 05-05-13